Mick Fanning, Owen & Mikey Wright Confirmed For Quiksilver Pro Start

7 Mar 2017 0

COASTALWATCH | LATEST NEWS

The World Surf League discussions have been quite popular on Coastalwatch over the last month. But let's focus now on the athletes and the first event of the 2017 World Championship Tour due to begin it's waiting period next Tuesday 14 March at Snapper Rocks.

Big news this week with the official confirmation that three of the Wright family will have places in the event. 2016 World Champ Tyler, the return of wildcard Mikey and returning from a year off in recovery is Owen who has been given the injury wildcard. 

In the year that Kelly Slater has said will potentially be his last, Mick Fanning will return all-guns-blazing. Here's what the guys have to say...

MICK FANNING on returning to full-time competition and the competitive edge:

“I’ve decided to come back to competition full time and do the tour this season,” Mick says. “It was nice to have 2016 off somewhat and decompress, but I’m excited to put the singlet on again."

“2015 was a tough year. A lot happened to me on camera and in my personal life. I just felt exhausted by the end of it. Fortunately, I was in a position to step away from the Tour and have some time to myself. I ended up doing a few events and qualifying, which was great because I didn’t want to take the wildcard off of Bede Durbidge or my Rip Curl teammate Owen Wright). But now I’m coming into 2017 seeded 18th, which will be a change for me."

Fanning said that for while he wasn’t sure he was motivated enough to take part in the 2017 season. "Like everyone else, I’ve slowly but surely gotten super excited about the line-up of surfers this year – it might be the best field from the top seed to number 34 that we’ve ever had. I also think it’s the biggest group of legit title contenders we’ve ever seen on the tour, and I want to be part of the race."

So what's the most important thing for the Fanning? "To me, is making sure that my surfing keeps evolving – and the tour, now more than ever, is the best place to do that. In recent years I managed to find a good balance between competitive focus and having fun. Getting switched on for events this year will be the key for me. I don’t think it will be a problem. It’s not in my nature to be half-hearted, so now that I’m committed I’ll be doing everything I can to get a win.”

OWEN WRIGHT on gaining the injury wildcard after a year of recovery from a head injury at Pipe Masters in 2015:

“I’m so thankful for the support of my friends and family, my sponsors, the WSL and all the people in the community who sent positive thoughts to me throughout my recovery,” Owen said. “I’m feeling stronger every day and I’m very much looking forward to returning to the Tour and further honing my fitness and surfing throughout the 2017 season.”

Owen, who finished the 2015 CT season ranked fifth on the Jeep Leaderboard, made his return to competitive surfing last month at the Maitland and Port Stephens Toyota Pro QS 6,000. After a successful run in the competition, he and his camp decided that it was time to rejoin the world’s best.


Tags: topnews , wsl , quiksilverpro (create Alert from these tags)

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